In this episode, MJ and Kara are at the behest of men to make or break their careers and personal lives.
For a show centered around a strong woman protagonist, episode nine of Being Mary Jane's fourth season was all about the decisions of men.
We left MJ (Gabrielle Union) at a restaurant with her boyfriend Lee (Chiké Okonkwo) and his lesbian baby momma, Zoe, who wants his sperm to raise a child with her partner. Crazy request, right? What was even crazier is that Lee was actually considering obliging — you know, so all their kids can be related.
The episode opens with MJ and her man sitting in her hotel-home soaking in the events of the evening. But to MJ’s annoyance, Lee needs “space” to figure this out. Figure what out?! Your committed girlfriend is pushing 40 and wants to have babies with you and only you, ASAP.
Nonetheless, MJ is at Lee’s will.
Speaking of a man’s will, Justin (Michael Ealy) wants to keep the momentum going from MJ’s major Supreme Court justice story. He suggests someone does a follow-up interview with a woman who was a victim of internet attacks and is currently living in the Virgin Islands. Not one to pass up a work-funded Caribbean trip, Ronda (Valarie Pettiford) takes the bait. Now someone will have to fill her co-anchor seat on the nightly news.
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Oh, what fresh-faced talent could that be?
Justin pushes MJ to vie for the co-anchor spot alongside Aaron. She does by corning Aaron and noting she’s young and that’s what the people want to see on-air. And the highlight of the episode is when Aaron makes the announcement at their news meeting to Ronda’s chagrin. Yay! MJ's got the top spot (if only for one day).
Once again, another man has made a decision that shifts MJ’s life.
Ronda makes sure to have a dramatic sit-down with MJ to spew her usual hate and scare her into making a mistake on live TV. MJ takes that whole Ronda-idol thing seriously, and is actually shook by her Cruella de Vil speech. So while at the studio late night, she calls Justin over to help her practice. He does and it becomes clear that these two are becoming more than co-workers.
So here comes Lee who pops up at MJ’s job to tell her he’s not going to donate the sperm to his ex and wants to build with MJ. Whoop-de-doo.
“Seems like I’ve been doing that a lot lately. You know, waiting for men to decide,” MJ says to Lee. To which he responds, “I think I just needed time to mourn what could have been [with his ex], but now it’s time to focus on what can be, the future.”
MJ being the conciliation prize is, to say the least, not romantic. So when Lee meets Justin at the studio and they size up each other up, we get what’s happening. Lee better act right before…. Justin and MJ kiss. No, they actually kiss and this love triangle thing becomes more complicated and detrimental than ever.
Kara’s dealing with love issues too after Orlando shares with the world that he’s a in “monogamous” relationship with her. Kara, who’s made a career from working her ass off and never relying on a man, is now like MJ at the behest of a man. Her insecurities are on high the entire episode after seeing she was voted “MILF of the Week” on a popular website and internet stalking some of Orlando’s ex-flings. She's even invited to an exclusive poker event by boss Garrett, who's clearly now checking for her because of her famous boyfriend.
Unlike MJ, Kara isn’t the type to string her emotions to a man, and just like that she breaks up with Orlando. The situation is sad, but feels like a legit defense mechanism when her identity is being tied to a young, NFL tenderoni.
So here we are: MJ and Kara are in love ruts, confused, a bit angry and sad. And like the perfect villain, Ronda comes back early— just in time to sit in her co-anchor chair, making MJ’s substitute debut null-in-void.
If that’s not enough to frustrate you, then wait until next week.